The Only Pie Crust You'll Ever Need

by Kelsi in


 

For most people, even seasoned bakers, making really great flaky pie crust feels intimidating. Over the years I’ve learned a lot from pie classes at The Pantry, I’ve used a pastry blender, the fraisage method, the food processor and I think without question, Stella Parks’s “No-Stress Super-Flaky Pie Crust” recipe and method is the most accessible and foolproof way to do it, even if you are a complete novice and have never attempted pie crust before.

stella parks pie dough.jpg

The recipe can be found in Stella’s fantastic book Bravetart as well as the Food 52 Genius Desserts book which I think hands down is one of the best books of the year.

Watch this great video on how to do it on Food 52 and find the recipe here

Now what if you wanted to make a gluten-free version that could stand up to the all-purpose flour one and no one could tell? Impossible you say? Not any longer. Enter Alanna Taylor-Tobin’s Alternative Baker which has actually been out for a couple of years but is completely new to me.

alternative baker.jpg

There are so many talented people who are reimagining and redefining what it means to bake gluten-free. Many are trained pastry-chefs. Liz Prueitt of Tartine fame is one. Her book Tartine All Day is really great. And Aran Goyoaga (who’s second book comes out next fall where she’ll help us all make gluten-free sourdough bread that looks like this) has been a long-time inspiration with her blog and book Small Plates and Sweet Treats.

It is completely possible to bake pretty much every cookie and cake that you can imagine and that you wouldn’t tag with a “these taste gluten-free” label. Really stellar, flaky pie crust however, at least for me, has been a little more elusive, until last week…

I used the gluten-free all butter pie dough recipe from Alternative Baker which is also available on Alanna’s great blog The Bojon Gourmet. However instead of using the fraisage method she favors I simply used Stella Parks’s technique to make the flaky layers. I wrapped the dough and let it rest in the fridge for at least one hour and then proceeded.

And now I can’t stop. I made Pamela Salzman’s salted maple apple galette over the weekend…

GF galette.jpg
GF pie crust.jpg

Next up is this savory potato radicchio galette I’ve had bookmarked for months…

  Image via    New York Times

Image via New York Times

Go forth and get your pie on!

 

My Wishlist...Holiday Edition

by Kelsi in , , ,


 

I would love to open my closet and see this gorgeous Paris Jacket from Emerson Fry hanging in there…

emerson fry paris jacket.jpg

I have long wanted a Japanese style pinafore apron and this one from Rough Linen is perfect. It even comes in a petite option. I’d love it in the charcoal…

rough linen pinafore.jpg

The lovely back…

rough linen pinafore back.jpg

I would also like a proper waiter’s apron

rough linen waiters apron.jpg

I think this Cotopaxi Kusa Hybrid Jacket is super cool…

cotopaxi kusa hybrid jacket.jpg

A duffle bag is one of the few styles I don’t have and this rad Brown Buffalo Duffalo fits the bill…

brown buffalo duffle.jpg

I am in love with this Clare V belt bag in disco stripe…

le belt bag.jpg

But the truth is I already have a Clare V fannypack that I love so what I think I really “need” is the Clare V Midi Sac

Midi-Sac---Disco-Stripe-Patchwork---HB-CB-MS-100021-BLK---Front.jpg

I’ve been looking at this Everlane cocoon coat for a long time…

everlane cocoon coat camel.jpeg

My side table is already stacked with books but I think if I had Educated I’d move it to the top of the pile…

Educated-Tara-Westover.jpg

How to be a Good Creature would have been on my list if I could have waited and didn’t already purchase it for myself…

how to be a good creature.jpg

And I have long wanted to learn how to sew and here in Seattle, Drygoods Design is the place to do it. A gift card here might ensure that I finally carve out some time in the new year to take a “This is a Sewing Machine” class

drygoods design.jpg
 

Holiday Gift Guide

by Kelsi in , , ,


 

It is December! We don’t have a tree yet and I haven’t started playing holiday music but I think today might be the day it all begins. And with that, here are some ideas for giving this year…

Billecart Salmon Champagne is my most favorite thing to imbibe ever. It is special and only makes an appearance once or twice a year around our house but I can’t imagine a more elegant gift…

billecart salmon.jpg

Except if you brought it with a vintage Champagne bucket

vintage champagne bucket.jpg

These beautiful Heather Taylor Home napkins would be a fantastic hostess gift. See all of the options on her website

heather taylor home napkins.jpg

Chocolate from Askinosie would make another lovely hostess gift. I have my eye on many of the CollaBARation bars and this coconut milk chocolate. If you don’t know about Askinosie Chocolate read their story here

askinosie chocolate.jpg

I love these Maison Louis Marie candles and picked up a few at Canoe last time I was in Portland. I love No.09 and No.04

maison louis marie candles.jpg

I also love these Cotopaxi Libre socks in a variety of colors…

cotopaxi libre socks.jpg

This delicious and assertive G. Day body wash is great and reminds me of a more unisex and a cleaner (read: no SLS, parabens etc) version of the Molton Brown Black Peppercorn wash my husband has long favored…

goop body wash.jpeg

This gorgeous and super soft alpaca sweater from Everlane

everlane alpaca.jpg

My brother worked on this Brooks shoe and I wore it for the first time at the studio last week and nearly every client wanted a pair for themselves. They are that cool.

brooks ricochet le women.jpg

My husband has a pair too that are equally as cool…

brooks ricochet le men.jpg

This gorgeous book from The Aviary in Chicago would be a killer gift for your food-forward friends…

The Aviary Cocktail Book.jpg

A pair of these Heath Tartine stack mugs

stack-mug-tartine-teal-heath-ceramics_205-0323.jpg

This gorgeous walnut rolling pin for the baker in your life…

walnut rolling pin.jpg

Pair it with the fantastic Genius Desserts from Food52

genius desserts.jpg

I cannot recommend Pamela Salzman’s cookbook highly enough. I’ve mentioned her on my blog many times. She has an incredibly resourceful blog and teaches countless cooking classes in the LA area (and now online classes too). She is a natural teacher and her recipes are always accessible, reliable, healthy and delicious. She is my go-to.

kitchen matters.jpg

New this fall, Ottolenghi’s Simple is fantastic. I’m gifting it to several friends this year.

ottolenghi simple.jpg

I LOVE these balm sticks from Olio E Osso out of Portland, Oregon. I have them in several colors and they give a beautiful flush of color and feel wonderful on the skin. I buy mine from Ayla Beauty in San Francisco. It’s a wonderful little shop that I like to support and they carry so many of the lines I love like Marie Veronique, BioRecept, Kosås and others.

olio e osso.jpg

For a young girl or boy in your life a subscription to Bravery Magazine

bravery magazine.jpg

I love these beautiful tattoos which are pulled from Oliver Jeffers’s gorgeous books…

Tattly Oliver Jeffers.jpg

I gave his book Here We Are to all the children in our family last year, though I’d recommend it for adults too…

Here We Are.jpg

Also, consider giving to an organization you believe in. I will be giving to On Being

OnBeing giving.jpg
 

On a Sunday

by Kelsi in , ,


 

We are coming off of a restorative long holiday weekend at home. After a quiet Thanksgiving, we haven’t left our house since. Lots of time for reading, movies, baking and of course getting started on handwriting exhaustive Santa wishlists (my son).

fireside puzzle.jpg

We are finishing the rest of our leftovers this evening for dinner. I love using these Kohler silicone mats as trivets. They also roll up so storing is a breeze…

leftovers.jpg

And a different type of silicone mat, this one has been great for doing crafts this weekend - painting, Perler beads and even Legos…

silicon mat.jpg

I’ve also done a fair share of online shopping, some gifts but mostly taking advantage of the sales to stock up on my usual staples like these Uniqlo cashmere sweaters. They are my most favorite and I wear one almost daily. They wear and wash well and you can’t beat the price. They do run a bit small and I like to size up in this style (for reference I’m usually a small but order these in a large)…

uniqlo cashmere.jpg

I also added the Alternative Baker (from Alanna of The Bojon Gourmet) to my cookbook library this week and it is already indispensable. I’ll have more to say later in the week but it completely changes the game on making gluten-free pastry dough and pie. OMG.

alternative baker.jpg

And some words of wisdom to take with you into the week…

This is my simple religion. No need for temples. No need for complicated philosophy. Your own mind, your own heart is the temple. Your philosophy is simple kindness.
— Dalai Lama
  From    here   .

From here.

 

Gratitude

by Kelsi in , ,


 

With profound gratitude on this day, Happy Thanksgiving.

thanksgiving.jpg

Messenger

by Mary Oliver
 
My work is loving the world. 
Here the sunflowers, there the hummingbird — 
equal seekers of sweetness. 
Here the quickening yeast; there the blue plums. 
Here the clam deep in the speckled sand.
 
Are my boots old? Is my coat torn? 
Am I no longer young, and still not half-perfect? Let me 
keep my mind on what matters, 
which is my work,
 
which is mostly standing still and learning to be 
astonished. 
The phoebe, the delphinium. 
The sheep in the pasture, and the pasture. 
Which is mostly rejoicing, since all ingredients are here,
 
which is gratitude, to be given a mind and a heart 
and these body-clothes, 
a mouth with which to give shouts of joy 
to the moth and the wren, to the sleepy dug-up clam, 
telling them all, over and over, how it is 
that we live forever.

 

Free Solo

by Kelsi in ,


 

Last year I simply posted this when news broke that Alex Honnold had climbed El Capitan without ropes. You can now go see the film about his awe-inspiring achievement…

On June 3, 2017, Alex Honnold free soloed the Freerider route of El Capitan in three hours and 56 minutes. It wasn’t an act of recklessness but of the kind of planning worthy of a moon landing. It wasn’t an act of selfishness but an extraordinary gift to everyone who believes that the limit of human achievement is far from being reached. It wasn’t a useless stunt but a reminder that utility alone is a poor way to measure the grandeur of one man’s spirit.

From here.

 

November 4

by Kelsi in , , ,


 

Last Friday I had the day off so after we dropped our kids at school, my friend Megan and I had big plans…a 1000 piece puzzle and making Samin’s salad from that last episode. M dubbed it “Friendship Salad.” There is a lot of joy to be had in cooking side by side and sharing a good meal. It was a fine day.

friendship salad.jpg

I love this puzzle by the way. I’m a sucker for fonts in general but these collage puzzles are super satisfying because you can constantly make progress - the perfect balance of challenge/reward. I just picked up this one too

puzzle.jpg

I am excited to host a quiet Thanksgiving at home this year and have been starting to think about what I want to cook. I like to roast chickens instead of turkey and am going to go heavy on the vegetable sides this year. I just bought these gorgeous Staub baking dishes in matte black that I can’t wait to put on the table…

staub black.jpg

Before Thanksgiving, I’m putting one of them to use to make this dreamy cauliflower from David Tanis. He’s so great and I love his latest cookbook Market Cooking that my friend Rita gave me for my birthday…

  Karsten Moran for The New York Times

Karsten Moran for The New York Times

I also just bought a second Instant Pot, an 8 quart this time, to keep up with my stock making this year - though I’ll have no trouble putting two to use for more things than stock. Homemade stock is a game changer for everything and the Instant Pot really makes it quick and foolproof. I love Melissa Clark’s chicken and vegetable stock recipes. They are included in her newest book, Comfort in an Instant, as well as her original Dinner in an Instant

two instant pots.jpg

I’m also starting to play with baking gluten-free bread and this is a great starting guide

GF artisan bread.jpg

From making stock and baking bread, I’m all about cooking for cooler fall weather. But I also love dressing for fall too and have happily transitioned my wardrobe. My uniform is pretty much always a sweater, jeans and either hightop Vans or ankle boots. And my most favorite jeans right now come from AGOLDE. Even if high-waisted jeans go out of fashion, I will never go back! These are perfect…

agolde jamie shroud.jpg

And these

Agolde Riley.jpeg

Lastly, I love everything about this look. I need to find that sweater…

camel sweater.PNG
 

Busy is a Decision

by Kelsi in , ,


 

If you could have a gigantic billboard anywhere with anything on it, what would it say and why?

My billboard would say this: “Busy is a decision.” Here’s why: Of the many, many excuses people use to rationalize why they can’t do something, the excuse “I am too busy” is not only the most inauthentic, it is also the laziest. I don’t believe in “too busy.” Like I said, busy is a decision. We do the things we want to do, period. If we say we are too busy, it is shorthand for “not important enough.” It means you would rather be doing something else that you consider more important. That “thing” could be sleep, it could be sex, or it could be watching Game of Thrones. If we use busy as an excuse for not doing something what we are really, really saying is that it’s not a priority.

Simply put: You don’t find the time to do something; you make the time to do things.

We are now living in a society that sees busy as a badge. It has become cultural cachet to use the excuse “I am too busy,” as a reason for not doing anything we don’t feel like doing. The problem is this: if you let yourself off the hook for not doing something for any reason, you won’t ever do it. If you want to do something, you can’t let being busy stand in the way, even if you are busy. Make the time to do things you want to do and then do them.

- Debbie Millman

From Tribe of Mentors by Tim Ferriss

 

October 21

by Kelsi in , , , , ,


 

Samin Nosrat’s book Salt Fat Acid Heat was one of my most favorite cookbooks last year and I have given it as a gift several times. She is a talented teacher and I loved watching her four-part series on Netflix this weekend. I especially loved the last episode where she prepares a gorgeous roasted vegetable salad at home and hosts friends for dinner. I am so inspired I have revisited her cookbook and am reading it cover to cover…

It was only a matter of time - I caught my first cold of the fall/back-to-school season last week. Time to start taking daily immune support. This one is my favorite

host defense immune support.jpg

I also consumed a lot of strong ginger and lemon tea with raw honey. You can make a big batch of ginger juice in the blender, but now that I have a proper ceramic ginger grater it is easier than ever to grate ginger in seconds. I can’t imagine not having this little tool in my kitchen

ginger grater.jpg

Re-inspired by Samin I have spent the bulk of my weekend in the kitchen. Making chicken stock in the Instant Pot, our favorite cookies and a batch of the best granola

granola.jpg

I have also made this caramelized onion and lentil pilaf from Nigella Lawson twice this week. It is so easy, economical and delicious. I would happily eat it for breakfast, maybe with some sautéed spinach…

lentil basmati pilaf.jpg

While in the kitchen I’ve been listening to a lot of Bach, a perfect companion - particularly if Yo-Yo Ma is involved

Speaking of Yo-Yo, his conversation with Krista is pure joy. What a gift of a human being he is. I also loved this recent conversation with Pádraig Ó Tuama and Marilyn Nelson.

These are the kind of things we need for the tired spaces of our world. This is the way we need to move forward in a world that is so interested in being comforted by the damp blanket of bad stories. We need stories of belonging that move us towards each other, not from each other; ways of being human that open up the possibilities of being alive together; ways of navigating our differences that deepen our curiosity, that deepen our friendship, that deepen our capacity to disagree, that deepen the argument of being alive. This is what we need. This is what will save us. This is the work of peace. This is the work of imagination.
— Pádraig Ó Tuama

We spent last weekend in the hills outside Santa Cruz at a family wedding. It was an incredible party and there was an amazing band so we all threw down and danced the night away. I finally got a chance to wear this gorgeous dress from Doen

D + K wedding.JPG

And my favorite earrings from Annie Costello Brown. They make any outfit an outfit.

acb earrings.JPG
 

Saturday

by Kelsi in , , ,


 

I am wrapping up the last of my two-week break and head back to the studio on Monday. It has been such a gift to have an extended period of time to slow down and recharge. I did cross off several things on my to-do list but also was deliberate about not trying to accomplish too much. I took a few naps while my son was at school, I took long walks with a friend and had an indulgent lunch at Le Pichet with champagne. I am profoundly grateful and happy to be here and am ready to get back at it on Monday…

  Le Pichet

Le Pichet

Today we all slept in and have been enjoying a lazy day at home. I’ve been cleaning out the kitchen drawers and re-organizing my pantry…

pantry.jpg

I also hope to get to my closet this evening and transfer some summer stuff over to these under bed storage cases I picked up at Ikea last week…

ikea stuk storage.jpg

The weather has cooled and we’ve had some long overdue rain showers and the last of my summer crops are reflecting the change. I’ve harvested the last of my lettuce - this one was stellar. I hope to find more of that variety next year. We’ve been eating it all week tossed with this fantastic tahini ranch dressing

salad tahini ranch.jpg

Last night there was no lettuce and I was solo for dinner and lacking motivation. I ate a bowl of potato chips and a glass of wine for dinner. Keeping it real. By the way, these chips are so good. And doesn’t Heath Ceramics make everything look amazing - even potato chips?! I picked up these little black bowls a few weeks ago when we were in San Francisco…

heath potato chips.jpg

I also bought a few new things during my break starting with this killer lipstick from Kosas. I don’t swipe it on but rather press it on with my finger (even a bit on my cheeks) so it looks more like a stain. Don’t let the bright color scare you off, it creates a beautiful flush and is incredibly flattering…

kosas violet fury.jpg

I love this look below…

fall outerwear.jpg

I couldn’t find a similar track jacket but happily settled for this classic Adidas one that I’ll wear both at the studio and under my oversized tweed jacket…

adidas SST track jacket.jpg

I also picked up this cozy and crazy affordable sweater jacket

uniqlo hooded knitted coat.jpg

And this one too but in the dark green (I had to size down on this one)…

uniqlo ribbed knitted coat.jpg

The last thing I need is yet another pair of boots, but if you need a great everyday pair I think these look pretty great…

everlane day boot.jpg